5 Days in Cape Town: Day 1 Waterfront and Winefarms
Our trip took place in late May. The weather was mild, and as we were visiting in off-peak season prices were lower than in the summer and nothing was crowded. We = two adults + 2 teens (our daughter and her friend). We would definitely recommend this as a great time to visit!
Where we stayed
We stayed in the Lawhill Apartments at the V & A Waterfront. (We booked through Booking.com and if you click through our link as a first-time user you get $20 discount and they give us $20!) It cost about $200 per night for a 2 bedroom apartment. The apartment was modern and very comfortable. And the location could not have been better. We overlooked a canal and could see the harbor in the distance. And it was a 10-minute walk to the shops, restaurants, docks etc.
We rented a car and downloaded Google maps of the area before we left home as we didn’t have cell service there. If you don’t want to rent, Uber is cheap and very convenient.
Obviously, the first thing we wanted to do was explore the Waterfront. Everyone was starving so we headed to the Mugg and Bean coffee shop for a hearty breakfast. We all chose omelettes to go along with our coffee and they were HUGE and filling and delicious.
The girls wanted to shop next. The Waterfront boasts not only many unique South African stores but also popular chains from around the world. We spent most of our time in Lush, Topshop and Zara which we don’t have in our hometown.
We skipped lunch as breakfast had been late and very filling.
As we only had 5 days in Cape Town, we opted to go wine-tasting at the local wineries instead of driving to Stellenbosch for their wine-route. First up was Klein Constantia. Wine tasting was R50 per person – but the fee is waived if you buy some of the wine you tasted, as we did. (If you go with more than 6 people be sure to book, but that isn’t necessary for a small party)
Our host, Alan, was a lot of fun. He told us that Jane Austen recommends in Sense and Sensibility the Constantia dessert wine for “its healing powers on a disappointed heart”. The estate’s award-winning Vin de Constance is indeed a revival of this famous wine.
Alan even took us downstairs to show us the cellar which you can book for an exclusive wine-tasting experience.
We then moved on to the Buitenverwachting Estate. Here you sit at an outside table and they bring you the wines to taste.
They also have light snacks available. We bought koeksisters, a traditional South African pastry deep fried in oil and the soaked in syrup (I know … not healthy at all!!).
It is a great setting and there were a number of moms enjoying a glass of wine on the lawns in front of us while their children ran around.
Our final wine farm was a newer one – Constantia Glen. The wines we tasted weren’t amazing, perhaps because all the current wines were already sold out, but the view made up for it. We ordered a cheese platter there to keep us going until supper.
Staying at the Waterfront means there are a plethora of restaurants to choose from in walking distance. And the walk to them is beautiful. We chose the Cape Town Fish Market and our walk took us past the Clock Tower which is beautifully illuminated at night. The food was disappointing. The rice in the sushi was overcooked. The kinglip (local fish) was just OK but not memorable. The girls were happy with their choice of fish and chips and a Greek salad. But with so many restaurants to choose from, I would suggest you try something different.
Continue reading about what we did on Day 2.
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